University of Nevada, Reno
One example of Nevada's research expertise is found in earthquake engineering. With the nation's largest horizontally oriented earthquake simulator, Nevada scientists regularly test structures for their resilience during earthquakes.
More than 100 years ago, an intrepid researcher at the University of Nevada, Reno trekked into the Sierra and created a form of scientific discovery that informs one of the West’s most important issues – water.
University classics professor James Church, often hiking alone for miles into the snow-filled high country, developed the modern system of snow surveying and snow science that today predicts spring runoff and water supplies for all of the western states.
Fifty years ago, psychologists Allen and Beatrice Gardner revolutionized the underpinnings of communication through their work with a young chimpanzee named Washoe. Their experimental efforts to teach sign language of the deaf to the chimp won international attention and led to the production of a film chronicling their efforts.
Today, research at the University continues in the same pioneering fashion. Nevada researchers are nationally and internationally known in areas that include renewable energy, earthquake engineering and environmental literature. Nevada is one of the top 120 universities in America for funded research, according to the Carnegie Foundation. With more than $80 million in research expenditures, a figure that has almost doubled over the past 10 years, the University is the leading research enterprise in Nevada’s higher education system.